the economy. actual real-world events. this, for example, is what happened to the vix on october 24th, 2008, that big red arrow there. that's when the stock market crashed in '08, one of the worst days of the great recession, record high vix. another spike happened may 20th, 20 2010 when there was sudden new that is europe's economy was even in worse shape than we thought. it spiked at a two-year high august 8th, 2011, when the u.s. credit rating got downgraded. republicans in congress threatened to default on our national debt and credit rating got downgraded. wall street freaked out. vix went way up. you can think of a high vix reading, a spike in the vix as a red light flashing. alert, alert. maybe your economy is tanking. maybe it isn't. but a lot of people on wall street have reason to believe that it is. panic. today, as he kicks off his inauguration weekend, president obama was given a great present by the vix. this is the present that vix gave to barack obama today to celebrate his inauguration as a second-term president of the united states. look. happy inauguration, mr. president.